Being Out is a feature that looks at LGBTQ people in sports who have come out since Outsports first published in 1999. Today: College wrestler Justice Horn.
Justice Horn describes himself as “African American, Caucasian, Polynesian and Native American, Christian and openly gay.”
It’s his way of saying there’s no one easy way to define him. The student body president of the University of Missouri Kansas City first gained prominence coming out as an openly gay wrestler at his previous college, Northern State University in South Dakota.
In his story, he talked about how he acted decisively and came out to his team and coach in one day and was immediately embraced. It’s emblematic of the soon-to-be senior, who is driven to meet his goals. The Blue Springs, Missouri, native has one lofty future ambition: Be Missouri’s first openly gay, African American governor,
Here are Horn’s answers to our six Being Out questions:
What do you love the most about wrestling?
I loved that we all trained, suffered and went to battle for each other when we competed.
My team and coaches were among the biggest supporters of me leaving the sport and pursuing my career in politics. When you compete in wrestling, you defend your team, wear your school and represent the team atmosphere.
What I miss the most about competition is my coaches and my team because of the friendships and leadership I had. They help shape me into the person I am today.
What does it personally mean to you to be LGBTQ+ in sports?
What it means to be LGBTQ+ in sports is representing your community in practice, in competition and in the off time.
When I came out again in college, I was the first gay person many people had interacted with in their life. My values, and who I was, went to battle everyday against the stereotypes used against our community. I understand I am an ambassador of my community and I will continue to open up to people who ask me about being gay and my experiences.
What advice would you give to LGBTQ+ kids in athletics or who want to participate in athletics, the kind of advice the younger you wish you had heard?
The advice I would give to LGBTQ+ kids in athletics is to be who they are and embrace themselves because only then can one truly compete. The advice I wish I would I would hear is to do more, embrace yourself and take more chances.
Who is someone that inspires you?
My parents, because they have always supported me and followed me on my path to where I am today.
I know that the opportunities I have were created by them through their endless love and sacrifice. I am the young politician I am because of the leadership style of service they have instilled in me.
What are you passionate about now?
What I am passionate about is my career in politics and making real change in places that need it. I am the student body president of the University of Missouri Kansas City, the largest university in the Kansas City area.
With my position, my influence reaches far past my community, past my city and past Missouri, to better the lives of others. I am no longer known as the gay college wrestler or even the gay president. I am known and recognized as Justice Horn.
I plan to run for the Missouri House and my goal is to be the first openly gay and African American governor of the state of Missouri. I plan to continue to use my platform and position to represent disenfranchised communities
What is your most memorable sports moment?
My most memorable sports moment was when I used my platform to no longer better myself but better others who may not have a voice.
I know that being an openly gay wrestler doesn’t define me, but it is a part of my story. I knew that I had a good environment and I felt that I still had to share my stories because many people may relate to it in some form.
I remember getting my first message from a person who was not out and then realizing, that’s why I do this, and I want to continue to do this. I hope that I am remembered because of all the good I added back into others lives.
Justice Horn is the student body president at the University of Missouri Kansas City. He is the school’s first openly gay and black president. Horn lives in Kansas City, Missouri, and is a former college wrestler at Northern State University. He can be reached on Instagram: @justicehorn ; Twitter: @JusticeHorn_ or Facebook: Justice Horn.
If you are out in sports in any capacity as openly LGBTQ and want to be featured in Being Out, drop Jim Buzinski an email (firstname.lastname@example.org).